Stuffing = mixture of bread and stuff crammed into the turkey cavity. May, or may not be edible.
Dressing = mixture of bread and stuff, seasoned and baked until golden brown. It’s delicious and absolutely edible.
So, ok kids. Here’s an area where the North meets the South.
Here, we aren’t so concerned with stuffing the bird with “stuffing”, but rather making our “dressing” – which is a side dish – and not so thick that it’s like eating a piece of bread. We want it to be soft enough that you can spoon it out rather than cut it. We also, in our family, like to top our dressing with cream of chicken soup as opposed to traditional gravy.
Yep, I said it. Not gravy, Campbell’s Cream of Chicken Soup. And it’s amazing.
I have an overall feeling that in the North they make the traditional “stuffing” and it’s not really a significant part of the dinner.
Dressing has always been my favorite part of Thanksgiving. And it’s better the next day, which is great because you typically have a good bit leftover – at least in my family because my mother, aunt and grandmother all typically make a big pan.
Here’s my new take on it; it involves pulled pork from some ribs I made the day before. Since the pork was already seasoned, it added extra flavor to the dressing. I also threw in some chipotle sauce.
I love anything chipotle.
Pulled Pork Chipotle Dressing
2 cups cornmeal
1 egg, whisked
1/3 cup canola oil
1 1/4 cups whole milk
2 cups pulled pork – I used leftover ribs I slow roasted in the oven
1 tbsp seasoned salt
1 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp sage
1 tsp poultry seasoning
1 tbsp pepper
2 tbsp chipotle adobo sauce (comes in a can of whole chipotles in adobo sauce found on the International isle)
1 1/2 cans cream of chicken soup
13 oz chicken broth – I say this because I bought a 26 oz container and used about half
Preheat oven to 475° and grease a 9×9 baking pan. Combine cornmeal through milk, pour into pan and bake for 15-20 minutes, until done. Remove and let cool for about 15 minutes.
Reduce the oven heat to 400°.
In a stand mixing bowl add the cornbread and break it into a few big hunks. Add the pork and remaining ingredients and mix on low for about 30 seconds until evenly crumbled. To that add the pork through broth and mix on low until combined thoroughly – about 2 minutes or so. Taste and adjust seasonings if you need to. Some of you may want more salt, more cream of chicken, etc. You know what I mean.
Pour in a 9×11 glass baking dish and cook for 25-30 minutes, until golden brown on top. The more you bake it, the more firm it becomes so keep that in mind.
Top it off with some cream of chicken if you want.
Save some for the next day!!